Thursday, February 28, 2008

Fisher Price for Insomnia

This little thing right here? I love it muy mucho. It lights up and makes bubble noises and plays Pachabel's Canon in D. Which, for the record, happens to be one of my most favorite classical pieces- Ever. And as a visual bonus, the little fishy moves back and forth...back and forth. It really is quite soothing. Whenever I go in the bedroom I turn it on. It lulls me to sleep every time. And Baby Girl is rather fascinated by it as well. It's a two-fer.

(Is it me or does she look as if she is wearing an Elvis toupee in this picture?)

And guess what?

I've run the batteries down in two days. Blast them darn batteries.

How will I ever sleep tonight?

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

The Crib

We did it. We finally broke down and bought a crib. We are of the co-sleeping mindset, but I have to tell you...I think we may be getting a wee bit too old...or too fat...or both, to be able to sleep with an infant for a whole year. We are still fans and supporters of co-sleeping...just maybe not quite as long with this particular child.

Neither Monk nor I had been sleeping well. Sleeping with Attila the Hun is never pleasant. I was having major chiropractic issues with my right shoulder and discovered it was from our co-sleeping endeavors with Baby Girl. And Monk? He has issues of his own in just falling asleep, so having a baby finger shoved up his nose in the middle of the night or his beard hair yanked out at random intervals was just compounding the problem.

Baby Girl has a co-sleeper, but was getting too big for it. We figured that out pretty quick last week when she flipped head first out of the doggone thing. We needed something bigger.

As in crib...bigger.

So, Monk not only bought me a crib for her, but let me buy the most darling bedding set at Target. I wasn't even expecting it. I was thinking crib, mattress and sheet. That's it. Then he chimed in about a bedding set and I was over the moon! Not that he's cheap mind you, but I was trying to save money.

So, last night we bought the crib and came home and put it together. Since the crib is in our room (because all the others are filled), we knew it was going to be a tight fit.

Do y'all think 6 1/2 inches between my side of the bed and the crib is enough room? Well, it has to be because that's what it is. I have 6 1/2 whole inches! I am thankful to God for those 6 1/2 inches because I wasn't even certain I was going to get those!

Let me tell you...I LOVE HAVING THIS CRIB!

Life has just been simplified greatly for me. I can now take a shower without having to have someone listening or watching for Baby Girl. I can now lay her down for a nap and actually leave the room to let her fall asleep on her own (which, by the way, she did today! Yeah!). I can now get dressed without having to break my neck trying to prevent her from falling off the bed while also trying to pull a shirt over my head.

These may seem like trivial things to y'all, but for me? It's like Disney World!

And so, I now introduce you to...

The Crib.

My whole 6 1/2 inches! Woo-hoo!

"Hey, isn't this what they call, 'baby jail'?"

Sleeping like...well, uh....a baby.

If you'll notice, above her head is embroidered with "lovely girl". We looked, but couldn't find one that said, "Sleeps like Attila the Hun". Apparently that's not real popular right now. Go figure.

Who coulda thunk a crib could make two parents so very happy. Happy Dancing that is.

In our 6 1/2 inches!

You Know You're A Cheapskate When... leave the Goodwill having purchased a skirt for yourself, a shirt for your husband, a dress for your 7 year old and a small glass sugar bowl, having only paid just under $8 for all of it because you had a $10 off card....

....and on the way home you get buyer's remorse.

Thursday, February 21, 2008


We are firm believers in growing them big and strong around here

Can you imagine what her diapers must look like?

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Watch Out For the Mayonnaise

So tonight after Wednesday evening services I'm having another fast food craving. Last time it was Taco Bueno with not so good results. Tonight it was Whataburger. For those of you non-Southern folk, Whataburger is one of the most incredible mouthfuls of deliciousness you will ever experience. Yes, it is fast food, but they make their artery clogging goodness hot and fresh, with melt-in-your-mouth results.

We didn't want to eat full meals so Monk and I split a burger and fries while Madgirl, Sis and Liv split a 3 piece Chicken Tender meal (on which there is a delicious bread coating and served with a side of gravy goodness and a piece of Texas toast). Once home, we split up the meals accordingly.

Monk, God love him, has a certain propensity shall I say this?

Dripping food down the front of him every time he eats a cotton-pickin' meal! He has truly ascended to new levels in the art form of splooging all over his shirt. What can I's a gift and a curse.

Well tonight, Baby Girl was being her fussy, nobody's-gonna-please-me self. My Monk, being the gracious husband and father that he is, offered to hold her so I might be able to partake of a hot meal (which by the way is a rarity - I'm telling you the child has some sort of Hot Food Sensor chip and begins to wail the moment I attempt to take a bite). So, Monk is holding Baby Girl on one knee with one hand while eating with the other hand.

The man is nothing if not talented.

Anyhoo, while chewing my simply delicious bite of burger I look over to see that he's managed to mess himself (in the upper body sense of the phrase) once again. He is nothing if not consistent people. I let him know that he's dripped some form of mayonnaise/mustard mixture onto the front of his shirt. Being the classy sort of guy he is, he simply takes his finger, swipes it up and puts it in his mouth.

Something I forgot to mention about Whataburger, y'all....they don't put mayonnaise on their burgers.

This was not a mayonnaise/mustard combination.

This was a Pumpkin Pear baby food/breast milk/spit up combination.


The man ate baby spit up tonight!

Things get a little blurry at this point because once he realized that he actually ate baby spit up and I saw the look on his face...well, let's just say that I nearly lost consciousness from lack of oxygen due to laughter. Or rather loud guffaws. Loud, raucous, guffawing laughter. I'm sure you get the drift.

You've never seen a man dive for a Coca~Cola faster in your life! He then began to shovel french fries, slathered in ketchup into his mouth with tremendous speed and agility.

It was priceless, really.

Almost as good as the time he tried out the Bark Collar.

I give him credit though. Had he done this a mere five years ago, he would have been in the bathroom dry heaving his toenails. I still would have been laughing raucously and blogging about it, but a little concerned nonetheless.

The man has come a long way.

But I don't think he'll ever lick another thing off his shirt again.

Nope. Just wouldn't be prudent.

Child of the Light

This Little Light of Mine...

I'm Gonna Let It Shine...

This Little Light of Mine...

I'm Gonna Let It Shine, Let It Shine, Let It Shine, Let It Shine!

Mat 5:16 Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.

Friday, February 15, 2008

Valentine-ish Stuff Amongst Other Things

Are these just not the cutest things you've ever seen? MadGirl wanted some special treats for a few friends of hers and this is what we did.

We made a batch of Rice Krispy Treats using strawberry marshmallows. Neat-o, huh? I then pressed them flat into a jelly roll pan and used a heart shaped cookie cutter to cut them out. A little more effort than usual, but they turned out very cute. You really can't tell from the photo, but they are a lovely shade of pink.

Yea, we kinda like'em so we think we'll just have to keep'em.

Only the best Valentine's Day gift ever. Not one, not two, but three bags of my favorite chocolates. One from each of my little ladies.

For those that know me...if my behind starts becoming unusually large over the next few assured, you will know why.

~And now for the Other Things ~

This week has not been a good week for me in the kitchen. I burned chicken breasts on the grill last Friday night. Tuesday night I burned a batch of Banana Chocolate Chip muffins. And today? Today I managed to burn toast. Not just a little either. Blackened to the point that the toaster was smoking like a chimney and I set off the smoke alarm. Y'all, I just don't burn things. And to burn three things in one week?

I am so ashamed.

One step before charcoal



This little box? It made us very happy this week. Sigh....
It will make our lonely bank account very happy next week. Sigh...
Who says big families are bad? Sigh...

And last, but not least...the last installment of my reasons for Hating the Television will be coming on Monday. I have a very fun, relaxing weekend planned where I can sit and think about the last post long and hard.

So once again, be prepared to be challenged in your cultural thinking. Put on your arguing shoes if you need to...

This one's gonna hurt.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Me and Monk: A Love Story Part II

If you're just now coming in on the rapturous story of our love...please go here to begin.

And so our story continues...

Using red crayon as my pen, I unexpectedly ended our relationship. Monk's love was not hampered though. He gave me the space I needed (but truly didn't know if I wanted), yet knew in his heart of hearts that I would come back to him. After all, we did go to church together now and there was no way I could get around seeing him. Folks in the church were somewhat surprised as well. They were secretly rooting that I would rescue him from bachelorhood and a lifetime of bad fashion choices.

My mother on the other hand...well, I think "happy dance" would best describe how she felt. She had one word for Monk.


I jest not. That's what she called him. You see, she had moved in with me after my divorce to help me financially. It was not a good arrangement. There are people you love and people you live with and sometimes you just can't do both. This was one of those arrangements. She didn't like the fact that:

1. I was dating Monk
2. I was dating Monk

She just didn't like him. She was suspicious of his carefree, debt-free lifestyle. But mostly she just didn't like his glasses. Yea, they were the thick kind. The kind that one must travel to the Hubble Telescope in order to cut the glass for them.

So, while I broke things off, I didn't stop seeing him. And after time we were back on as a couple. I'm telling you, the man needs a Nobel Peace Prize for continuing to stay with me despite my wishy-washy weird ways. By this time I had stopped going to the same church because I needed space and time to forgive my ex-husband. While I can't say what I did was right, it helped me tremendously. I began working through some forgiveness and was putting my depression behind me. And then July came.

It was the beginning of July and Monk was fixin' to leave for church camp. One night we were sitting in my car outside of his apartment (because I didn't go into his apartment - for moral reasons and the fact that it was a certifiable bachelor pad with the pizza boxes to prove it) just talking. I don't even remember what we were talking about, but something I said triggered Monk to correct me (surprise, surprise for those that know him). He called me out on something biblically and it ticked - me - off! I would try and justify what I was saying and he would ask me where I found that in the Bible. Needless to say, I couldn't answer him (because my attitude/view was not biblical and he was right and I knew it) and it made me furious! I told him so and then proceeded to tell him that I thought we didn't need to see each other anymore. How is that for mature?

So, off he went to church camp, expecting my ire to have cooled off by the time he returned.

It had not.

I wouldn't speak to him or answer his phone calls. He sent me a card for my birthday and I didn't respond. He sent my children cards to let them know he was thinking about them and I acknowledged nothing. Nada. Zilch. For weeks I acted as if he didn't exist.

This hurt him deeply as he knew I was the one for him and he thought he had lost me. When he would think of me he would play Gershwin's "You Can't Take That Away From Me". He comforted himself with this scripture and prayed this scripture to God:
Psa 37:4 Delight thyself also in the LORD; and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart.

Two things happened in those six weeks. My depression lifted and I forgave my ex-husband completely. The bitterness and hurt that had saddled me left and I felt as if a weight had been lifted from my shoulders. I was a different person. My mom had moved out and the stress of that situation was gone as well. Life was good, except I didn't have Monk to make me laugh.

Then on August 12th, six weeks after I had broke things off, I called him. It was his birthday and I just couldn't let it pass without acknowledging him. I could tell he was shocked and elated to hear from me. I wasn't even very pleasant to him on the phone. I told him the kids wanted to do something with him because it was his birthday.

Boy, was I shocked when I saw him. Gone were the thick glasses, replaced with some much smaller frames and thinner lenses. He had even bought new clothes. All for me. I know how shallow this makes me sound, but the fact that he loved me enough to go to the trouble of getting new glasses and clothes to impress me really astounded me. My ice-woman attitude melted and I found myself wanting to be with him. When I asked him if he thought we were over for good he responded with a firm, No. He then told me of the scripture that he read and claimed about me. This touched me deeply.

Not too long after that we were out one night and decided to head to Sonic for some Foot Long Chili Cheese Dogs. We are nothing if not some classy folks, let me tell you. This is when we started to talk about marriage. We started planning a future together that night in the Sonic Drive-In. So romantical, I know.

Monk never officially proposed - we just sort of agreed we needed to get married. By December of 1997 we made it official and set a date. While God had truly given me peace about my previous marriage I was still a little scared of a second go round. What if Monk left me too? He reassured me time and time again that he would never do that.

Finally, on June 27, 1998, we made a vow to one another before God to stay married until death do us part. My 6 year old Boy gave me away. Monk made vows to my children on bended knee and there wasn't a dry eye in the church. We then went on an excellent honeymoon to where else?

Disney World!

It only seemed appropriate since it was a phone call from Disney World that started the whole thing. And we took the kids with us. And we bought lots of Tigger stuff.

This June will be 10 years of marriage for us. There have been some very trying, very lean times in those ten years. We never turned on each other, but rather turned to each other. We leaned on one another and trusted God to take care of us and our love has done nothing but grown stronger. I no longer feel as if God had forsaken me in the area of marriage. He had a bigger plan the whole time. A better plan. A plan that I could not have dreamed of in a thousand lifetimes.

Monk is my best friend, my soul mate and my Beloved. I'm honored to be his wife.

Even if he is a weirdo.

Me and Monk: A Love Story Part I

It all began in November of 1996.

I was a newly divorced 27 year old mother of two small children. Bitter and hurt by the betrayal I felt from my first husband, I was not in the mood for love. As a matter of fact, I was determined to never love again. Day after day, I walked aimlessly, severely depressed and lonely, quite certain that God had forsaken me in the area of marriage. My life wasn't supposed to be like that.

And Monk? He was a certified bachelor. 34 years old and content in his singleness. His companionship came from a few friends and his dog, a chow/collie mix named Bear. He owed no one, paid cash for everything and most of the time had a few bucks to burn (oooooh, foreshadowing).

One of my very best friends from college was getting married. She was marrying one of Monk's old roommates - a friend from church. She knew the state of mind I was in and even though I wasn't in the wedding, had asked me to come to the rehearsal dinner. She knew Monk was going to be there (he was part of the wedding in some way - he's so old he can't exactly remember his part) and she was attempting to see what I thought of him.

Interestingly enough, the day of the rehearsal I found out that my husband had been seeing another woman for several months. It was a week before our divorce was final and I had prayed and prayed that God would change his heart. It was not to be. I was crushed. I called my friend's fiance crying and told him I couldn't come, not after what I had just heard. He encouraged me, for my friend's sake, to come anyway. And so I did.

Honestly, I have no recollection of even seeing Monk at the rehearsal, nor does he recall seeing me.

We are nothing if not astute.

My friend went on to get married and go on her honeymoon to Disney World. Monk was the one watching over their apartment and taking caring of their dogs while they were gone. One day, while at their apartment the phone rang. It was my friend on her honeymoon (in Disney World) on the other end of the line. She asked him (from her honeymoon, y'all!) if he would be willing to date a divorced mother with two small children. Monk thought for a moment and then said yes. He figured it was a win-win situation. His mindset, at the time, was that he wouldn't marry a woman who had been divorced (especially with children), but it might be fun to have another person with which to hang around with our mutual friends and not feel like the third wheel. There would be no strings attached.

After returning from their honeymoon and some time had passed, my friend called and asked if I'd be willing to go out with them and a friend of theirs. It was after Christmas by this time and a local amusement park was still having their holiday hours and shows. After making sure that there were no strings attached and that this wasn't a date, I agreed. After all, I wasn't in the mood for love, remember?

I should have known it was a sign when Monk showed up at my front door on December 28, 1996 and we were both wearing Tigger sweatshirts. I mean really, how many people wear Tigger sweatshirts? We went to the amusement park with our friends and had a really good time. What was funny was that we seemed to have nothing in common. But we had a good time. I said black and he said white. But we had a good time. We enjoyed laughing and that seemed to be the only common thing we shared.

We ended up getting together with our mutual friends again a few days later. This time at my house. We all had a great time talking and laughing. We did this many, many times over the next few weeks. We watched movies, played Uno and ate more pizza than I care to remember. What was great was that my kids really enjoyed him and he had a ball with them.

We didn't go on an official date until February. We then began to see one another without our mutual friends. Bless this man's heart. I had more baggage than Samsonite. I was still suffering from depression and still trying to deal with the emotions from my divorce and yet this man still wanted to be around me. After a particularly difficult event in March, when any sane person would have ditched me, he was still there. He realized he had fallen in love with me and was in it for the long haul. Me? I was barely surviving and not in the mood for love.

The very next month (April '97), while sitting in a Sunday evening church service, I did the unthinkable. I wrote a note to this man, IN RED CRAYON Y'ALL, telling him that I was not in the frame of mind to be dating and broke things off with him.

I broke up with the man, during church, through a note, written in RED CRAYON.

I am the picture of class, let me tell you.

What happened next? Did we get back together? Did he fall to pieces? Did I go insane, writing bad poetry about broken love in red crayon all over the walls of my house?

Well, you will have to come back later today to find out.

It is nothing if not a thrilling tale.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

New Challies Drawing With A GREAT Prize!

Challies has another great drawing up for grabs right now and I wanted to pass it along to y'all.

February Giveaway

First prize are these great family friendly DVDs:

-Still Standing: The Stonewall Jackson Story
-Inherit the Land: Adventures on the Agrarian Journey
-The Eden String Quartet: A Bountiful Blessing
-A Journey Home
-The Peasall Sisters: Family Harmony

Second prize is:

-Still Standing: The Stonewall Jackson Story
-Inherit the Land: Adventures on the Agrarian Journey

Third prize is:

-Still Standing: The Stonewall Jackson Story

May I just say that Franklin Springs Family Media puts out some GREAT stuff where these DVDs are concerned. We have purchased and seen Inherit the Land: Adventures on the Agrarian Journey and we absolutely loved it. It inspired us even more for our family vision to move to some land of our own and teach our children the value of hard work and depending on God for His blessings.

We have ordered and are waiting on The Eden String Quartet: A Bountiful Blessing. I am in a dither waiting for this DVD to arrive! My musical genes are all a twitter with anticipation!

So please click on the button above and you will be able to enter. By clicking the button on my blog it gives me more opportunities to win as well. This will benefit you in the long run too. How, you ask?

If I win first or second prize I will put the Inherit the Land video up on my blog for my own little bloggy drawing. So, you get a second chance with much better odds! Woo-hoo!

I am nothing in not generous to my interweb bloggy friends, people.

So go now. Ride like the wind. Click the button. Let's win us some great family friendly DVDs!!

And people. Don't make me beg. I really like these DVDs.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Time To Lighten the Mood

Well, I did it. I scared people away with the television stuff. I kid you not. My stats for my sight have dropped BY HALF!

Oh well. I knew the job was dangerous when I took it. Should I only post fluffy things that make people happy? Or post the occasional controversial piece to try and make others think about some things?

Monk says people are bored with the t.v. and it's time to move one. But I only have one more post about it....sniff..sniff.

At any rate, what's done is done and there's not much I can do about it now.

OH WAIT!! Yes, there is ! I can post pictures of Cinnamon rolls! And cute babies! And cooking fiascos! Everybody loves a good cinnamon roll, cute baby and cooking fiasco! And the mood can be light and happy once again!

So, here we go:

Oh look! A yummy pan of delicious cinnamon rolls!
With PINK frosting!

Come here beautiful...Momma wants a bite!
(Aren't my paper plates so avant-garde?)

Since I can't have cinnamon rolls - I'll just chew on the side of my Co-Sleeper.

And finally, this would be what happens to chicken breasts when left on the grill for um...about and hour. I like to call them Cajun Style. Ironically, do y'all know why I left them on the grill so long?

I was watching television.

Monday, February 11, 2008

Television Talk - The Next Installment Part IV

It's baaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaccccckkkkk! I bet y'all are just begging for me to talk about cinnamon rolls and not the television, huh?

Too bad.

I started this Bad Boy and now I must finish it. But I will trickle in some pictures of food and such because I did make more cinnamon rolls this past Saturday and y'all know what I did?

I made pink icing! I did! It was so cute! You are fraught with excitement, are you not?

Alright, time to get back to the good stuff, so here we go.

6. Infinite amounts of mindless drivel.

5. Infinite amounts of inappropriate, s*xual content.

Yes, I'm doing two together. Honestly, I don't know how anyone can argue against either one of these points. However, I do realize that "mindless drivel" is subjective and what one might consider okay, another would not. I also realize that there are shows out there (few and far between) that are fairly harmless. Most of these shows are not your regular network television sitcoms and dramas which are the ones that I have HUGE issues with where Christians are involved. So, I'll skip my subjective opinions on mindless drivel and skip right to #5.

Network television sitcoms are ripe with blasphemy, s*xual content and a laundry list of other inappropriate content that NO Christian should even consider watching. Two years ago I probably didn't feel this way. In the process of my own sanctification I began examing my life and looking for sinful areas. This is where I found them. This verse would play over and over in my head while I was watching "my shows".

Phi 4:8 Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.

I went to Scripture and that is what I found. How could I watch certain shows while asking myself, "is this pure thinking? Is this lovely?". I just couldn't justify it any longer. Then there was this:

2Ti 2:21 Therefore, if anyone cleanses himself from what is dishonorable, he will be a vessel for honorable use, set apart as holy, useful to the master of the house, ready for every good work. 2Ti 2:22 So flee youthful passions and pursue righteousness, faith, love, and peace, along with those who call on the Lord from a pure heart.

I loved mysteries, crime shows, reality shows and comedies. Unfortunately, these were the ones that seemed to be the most offensive, especially in the area of s*xual content. I wanted God to use me, to be a vessel for His honorable use. So, I let them go.

So am I perfect or "holier than thou" because I chose to let "my shows" go? Have mercy, no! Trust me, there are plenty of other areas in my life that I need to look at and examine more closely, this was just my personal story on the television. Again, I'm not attempting to judge anyone, just asking folks to think is all.

I've said it before and I will say it again - television is a slippery slope. When we begin having to justify why we watch something or we find ourselves saying oh, it's really not that bad - this is when we should really begin to examine what we are viewing. If we will consistently hold ourselves to a Biblical standard then I think many of us would reconsider what we put into our minds.

I probably mislabeled #5. It should have listed more than just s*xual innuendo. There are plenty of other inappropriate reasons for questioning our viewing options.

4. My children become deaf and dumb when watching.

This is definitely a personal reason. If you're scratching your head because you don't remember what I said about children and television, then please go here. This should clear things up nicely for you.

When my children are hypnotized by the big black box of death, they hear nothing. Their responses become a cross between low grunts and frantic muttering. How dare I, their mother, interrupt their viewing enjoyment. This just screams addiction. Not to mention their obedience goes out the window. How can one obey mom when they must catch the end of their show?!

Can anyone remember the 5th commandment? It's the first one with a promise.

I can promise y'all this - when kids get in front of the television they will stop obeying the first time. I know this first hand. And it sends me to the moon! It's hard enough to train my children to listen to me when they're not distracted, much less having to compete with some superhero gerbil.

I do understand this is another subjective area, so please, not too many tomatoes!

Ahhhhhhh, a big sigh out as we have only 3 more points to go!! Woo-hoo!

Can you all bear with me through 3 more points? Have I offended to no end? Have I made anyone think differently yet? Am I totally off my rocker (okay, well that's status quo, so maybe I should rephrase that one!)? Keep the chatter going - it's good for all of us!

p.s If this post seems a little disjointed, it is. Please forgive my lack of thorough, well thought out points. My brain is mush and I'm trying to catch up on some sleep.

It's Coming, I Promise

My television post is coming. My weekend has been fraught with cookie making, chicken burning and children with 101+ fevers.

Excitement abounds.

Anyhoo, most of my post is done, but I need to add a few things lest I be accused of weak arguements. ;)

Come back later. And if it's still not posted then you can assume....I'm lame I guess. I'll get it posted eventually. At least after my chiropractor appointment.

I love my chiropractor. She cracks me up (and down and all around!).

I am nothing if not hilarious, I know.

Thursday, February 07, 2008

Bueno Not So Bueno

*Note: New edit at the bottom*

No, this is not a television post. I bet y'all are breathing a collective sigh of relief, huh? Do not fret though because they will return on Monday.

No. I'm taking a break from my 10 Reasons I Hate the Television because I have not been well today. No, I have not.

Last night after leaving church, we decided to make a quick stop at the Taco Bueno. And just so y'all know, I love me some Taco Bueno. Madgirl got a MexiDip and Chips, Monk got some Chicken Quesadillas, Little Girls got Chips and Queso and me? Well, I wanted some Party Tacos and a Party Burrito. (Party meaning smaller than a regular size). I ate two Party Tacos and one Party Burrito. After eating, I promptly took my 150mg of Zantac like I normally do every evening along with my Fish Oil supplements and other vitamins. Because after all, I am nothing if not a health conscious individual. Except for the Party Tacos and Party Burrito.

Oh yea, and the Cinnamon Rolls.

Anyhoo, during the middle of the night while nursing the Baby Girl, I didn't feel so great. Well, I attributed it to the fact that I had stayed up way too late expounding on my T.V. philosophies. I still managed to go back to sleep.


When I awoke this morning I REALLY didn't feel so hot. I took Baby Girl to Monk and pretty much figured things were going to go down hill from there. I will spare you the ugly details of what occurred first, but for a very long time I lay on my bed begging God to NOT LET ME THROW UP! And also worrying if I had contracted some deadly form of E. Coli.

I HATE throwing up, y'all. With every fiber in my being I HATE to throw up. This comes from the woman who if it weren't for the miracle of modern medicine would barf her guts out the entire time she is pregnant. Which I am not, so don't even go there.

Anyway, after feeling VERY vomitous for about and hour it seemed to settle down a little. I had a headache and just felt kinda gross after that. Needless to say, not much was accomplished around here today and I'm convinced it was because of the evil Bueno Tacos.

So, while I feel kind, I'm just gonna take a Friday bloggy break. And now that once again, I have rambled on and managed to turn something short and sweet into something long, drawn out and torturous, I will now shut-up and go crawl under my covers next to my Baby Girl. And my Monk.

Have a nice weekend.

Oh yea, and turn off the tube and do something different for a change. ;)

*I just want to let y'all know that my hubby has an AWESOME post over on his blog today ~ go read it HERE! :)

A Short Announcement and Then More T.V. Talk - Part Tres

Being the ignoramus I am, I completely forgot to make an important announcement a few days ago. I'm to be on the edge of your seats waiting for my exciting news.

No, it's not another baby ~ at least not yet. ;)

I have become a Vision Forum Affiliate. This means that Vision Forum has graciously approved my blog and I am now able to advertise for them from here at The Monk's Wife. You may have noticed the banners on the side of my blog. This is why they are there.

I love Vision Forum. Monk loves Vision Forum. We order lots of good stuff from them on a fairly regular basis, specifically books. Some books we've ordered recently include:

~ Passionate Housewives Desperate For God - I will be doing a book review on this book in the coming weeks. EXCELLENT book!

~ Family Man, Family Leader - A book concerning the father's role being pivotal in having a biblical family. Monk is reading this and enjoying it immensely.

~ Family Driven Faith - a book that I bought Monk for Christmas, but have taken it over since I finished Passionate Housewives. It is by one of my personal favorite speaker/authors, Voddie Baucham. Let me tell you people - GOOD STUFF! Anyone who has children needs to read it and anyone who plans on having children needs to read it.

At any rate, if any of you kind people order anything through Vision Forum by clicking my link at the side of my blog, I stand to earn a small commission. This could come in handy so I can buy more books - because we all know how I feel about the television, right?

And Vision Forum is offering a special deal for the next few days and I am passing it along to you kind people. Order $75 worth of good stuff and get $25 off of your order! Can't beat that! So, click my link and take a look around (you're not obligated to buy just for clicking), if you see 1 or 15 things you like...well, now you can justify your purchase because you have a coupon!

And now that I've written an essay for my short announcement, I will commence with the novel on my 10 Reasons I Hate Television post - Part Tres.... Brevity is not my strong point.

As with my other post, I will reiterate that I am NOT judging or condemning anyone one way or another on how or if they watch television. These are my convictions and beliefs and I trust anyone who reads this will search the scriptures and come to their own conclusions.

And so. I was told by someone that another someone, whom I won't mention, said that some of my arguments were weak. Weak? I'm writing a blog post not a thesis, people. In all honesty, I could drag this one out for a good three weeks I bet. Let's try to remember that I'm a wife and mother first. Blogging is a little ways down on the list of priorities. I'm burning the midnight oil as it is just trying to get these things out (deep breath in), plus I'm trying to keep it at a reasonable length and therefore not being near as thorough as I would like. However, as we can tell from the length of my post already today, we can pretty much assume that I'm going for some Monk's Wife bloggy length record. Sorry to those who find this irritating. Well, not really.

And now I commence.

7. Barney the Dinosaur and Dora the Explorer. Need I say more?

Oh -ho- ho! I could say a whole lot more on this one. Children and t.v. go hand in hand. Or so the culture thinks.

I'm sure that Barney, Dora, Baby Einsteins and some other irritating character could do well in teaching our children a few things, right? I mean what can it hurt to let them watch a show where they learn things, right?


Because once parents see that this show keeps their child occupied and busy and out of their hair for a good while then it becomes easier and easier to let the television do the training and the teaching that the parents are supposed to be doing! Before you know it, your child has spent two hours (or more) in front of the tube. At this point they start becoming addicts.

Yes, I said addicts. In their squeaky little child voices they start to beg and cry to watch the television. Dora is on the brain and they need their fix! I speak the truth here, people. I know these things because I've done them. I'm living it. I am now having to UN-do those things which I should have never started in the first place. It is my responsibility to be my child's teacher and by letting them obtain unhealthy, dare I say sinful, habits - it is my fault!

In Deuteronomy 6 the Bible tells us how we need to be teaching our children.

Deu 6:5 You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might.
Deu 6:6 And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart.
Deu 6:7 You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise.

*Emphasis mine

It is speaking to parents here. God wants US to teach our children about Him- A LOT! I'm not sure that God cares just where Dora is going or for that matter, what Swiper is swiping. Which by the way, the last time I looked was considered stealing and falls under one of the Ten Commandments. But swiping sounds so much nicer than stealing and we wouldn't want Swiper to have low self esteem because he takes things that don't belong to him. Poor Swiper, it's probably his parent's fault.

Ahem. Moving on.

We have a problem in the United States with childhood obesity. We let our children watch countless hours of television (while eating their Fruit Rollups, laden with delectable high fructose corn syrup - myself included), we buy them every new video system known to man, the schools take away their recess and then we have the experts appearing on Oprah, sitting around looking at each other all concerned, crying to Dr. Phil, and asking why.

Well, duh.

Playing comes naturally to children. They like to run and yell and chase each other. They love to be creative and use their imaginations. This is how they learn! And what do we do? We squash all of that wonderful God-given enthusiasm and energy by plopping them in front of the television to watch shows called Wow! Wow! Wubbzy!

One of my little girls, on almost a daily basis, comes to me or Monk and very quietly asks, "Momma/Daddy, can I watch just a little bit of television?". And on a daily basis we have to say no. Why? Because we let her get addicted to it. The ridiculous shows sucked her in and we let it happen. I will be honest and say that we let her watch a little every now and then. We try to keep it at one 30 minute show and then it goes right back off. She gets her "fix" and then she's good to go. Slowly, she's learning to go without.

Some, who will remain anonymous, will play devil's advocate with me and say to me, "why hate the television if it's the parent's fault?" And to this I will respond, "Yep. You're right". It is my fault, but aye, before ye go casting stones hear me words; the television is a slippery slope for all of us, but especially where children are concerned. If I didn't have a t.v. or didn't turn it on then we wouldn't have these problems. It is SO incredibly easy to let the television babysit when one needs to cook dinner or when one needs to finish doing _______(fill in the blank).

Is this an excuse? Maybe. Maybe not. But I can tell you what it is. It's a warning. Like I said before, television and children do go hand in hand. They do. But not in a good way.

In the process of detoxing my little girls from television I've seen some amazing things. I've seen their love of playing babies come back. I've seen their desire to play imaginary house with one another come back. I've seen a desire to go outside and swing their little hearts out come back. I see an interest in helping me bake or clean up. I see healthy, vibrant children that have learned that there are other things, more exciting things, to do besides watch the tube.

This, my friends, is a good thing.

And because of the excessive length and the fact that I'm burning the midnight oil and have a nursing infant ~ I'm callin' it quits on this post. I know I only covered one point, but I feel as if I covered it thoroughly (minus more scripture which I may come back and insert).

Comments, concerns, questions and yes, even tomatoes are welcome! Hope to hear your wonderful thoughts on this very controversial subject! :) Play nice now, ya hear?

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

T.V. Part II

Let me start by saying thank-you for responding to my last post. I was convinced that I would probably offend the masses (oh yea, like the masses are flocking to my blog) and therefore, silence in the end, would inevitably shut me up.

Not so, young grasshoppers.

Also, please understand that in writing these posts my goal is not to judge or condemn others. I'm simply expressing my beliefs and convictions. Please, please do NOT think I'm judging anyone. For the record (and I will expound on this more later) I do watch some television. Very little, but some.

I would also like to say that the Mad Monk read my blog after I'd posted and then went and posted some good stuff of his own on the subject. He is nothing if not a passionate writer my friends. Much more eloquent than my feeble attempts will ever be.

So. On to my hating the television.

I guess the most logical place to start is at the top. (I am so profound it's shocking.)

So here we go:

10. They are obnoxious focal points in any house.

I really cannot stand the t.v. to be a focal point of a room. Perhaps it is because we have a behemoth television (52 inches) from the late 90's and it really is big and obnoxious. We plan on purchasing a smaller one along with a cabinet (I hate the term "entertainment center") where the doors can be shut and I don't have to look at the thing.

It truly bothers me that entire rooms are arranged in such a way as to maximize the view of the television, which in turn minimizes interaction with real people. This should throw up huge, red flags as to what is important in our lives people. Real, live people or television characters?

9. They are time wasters.

Okay, this should be a no brainer. When I think of the hours that I have wasted sitting in front of the television it really does make me ill. I know that we all need time to unwind and relax ~ I know I do. I'm just not sure the *television is the best use of that time. Several passages of scripture comes to mind as I type this:

Eph 5:15 Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise,
Eph 5:16 making the best use of the time, because the days are evil.
Eph 5:17 Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the will of the Lord is

And specifically, I look to the Proverbs 31 woman.

Pro 31:27 She looks well to the ways of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness.

While I'm sure she rested, I can pretty much guarantee she didn't spend hours in front of the television watching Survivor - Assyria.

*In these posts when I refer to television I'm specifically referring to network television and not DVD's which I will cover later.

8. Hello? Do people read books anymore?

I was doing some research on this today and this is a few things I found:

-1/3 of high school graduates never read another book after graduating high school. That's in the rest of their lives people!

-80% of U.S. families did not buy or read a book last year. I'm sorry, but that is just so sad it makes me angry. You know what though? I bet they watched plenty of television.

A nation that prefers Homer Simpson over Homer's Odyssey is almost frightening. Pathetic even.

There is a vast supply of good literature out there and I fully intend on consuming as much of it as I possibly can. Monk has a great quote from Erasmus that he likes to use. It says, "when I get a little money I buy books; and if any is left I buy food and clothes".

We value books in our home. We look forward to reading them(well, except for The Boy who would pretty much rather gnaw off his left foot than to read a book). We have raised our children to enjoy reading and they do. They ask for books for their birthdays and Christmas. And they get them.

As a matter of fact, while walking through Wal-Mart tonight I found a child's abridged version of Anne of Green Gables. You know what? I bought it for Sis. She loved it and was already almost through chapter 2 by her bed time.

For me, when I need to unwind after a long day of dirty diapers, sisterly squabbles, cat vomit, dog hair, leaky sinks and unsuccessful attempts at making bread, I love nothing more than to curl up on the couch with a beverage of choice and a good book.

And a quote for you that is astoundingly true.

You don't have to burn books to destroy a culture.Just get people to stop reading them.~ Ray Bradbury ~

We must stop looking at the television as our only source of relaxation. I can pretty much guarantee that 100 years ago folks still found viable ways to relax without television. Much of the time they found their enjoyment in books. Reading is becoming a lost art and personally, I feel as if lack of reading is a major reason for the "dumbing down" in the schools today. It doesn't take a whole lot of brain cells to watch television and as with anything in our bodies, if we stop using something it begins to atrophy. This would include our brains.

Any thoughts? Opinions? Dare I say disagreements?

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

10 Reasons I Hate The Television

Here they are:

10. They are obnoxious focal points in any house.

9. They are time wasters.

8. Hello? Do people read books anymore?

7. Barney the Dinosaur and Dora the Explorer. Need I say more?

6. Infinite amounts of mindless drivel.

5. Infinite amounts of inappropriate, s*xual content.

4. My children become deaf and dumb when watching.

3. The dumbed down portrayal and effemination of fathers.

2. Commercials

1. It divides the family.

There it is. Off my chest and out in the open for everyone to see.

This is how I roll.

Do we own a television? Yes. (Have mercy, I can hear the collective gasps of "hypocrite" permeating my screen already).

I'll continue my thoughts on this throughout the week, but I want y'all to ask yourselves the question:

"Why do I watch television?" (not me, but you)

Any thoughts? Anyone want to hurl tomatoes at me through the screen?

Monday, February 04, 2008

Our Pampered Chef Winner Is....

I'm sure you all are ripe with excitement, huh? Without further adieu...

"Michelle said... Ooh, ooh, ooh! I'm in desperate need of a Cake Tester - I've been using an unraveled (and boiled) paperclip! {hangs head in shame} Thanks for the giveaway!"

I'm happy this fellow bloggyite won for three reasons:

1. I really, really like her name. I have no idea why really.
2. She lives in Kentucky and I think that is a beee-ooo-tiful state! It's also where my parents are from and it is in my top 3 places I would want to live!
3. I find it so totally pitiful that anyone would have to succumb to using a boiled paper clip for checking the doneness of her cake. She really needs the cake tester.

Congratulations Michelle! No need to hang your head in shame any longer sweetie! Your goodies will be on their way some time this week. Woo-Hoo! Time to whip out the apron girlie!

And to everyone else....thanks for playin'! It was fun.

Friday, February 01, 2008

Something For You to Chew On Over the Weekend

I've mentioned before how much I like Voddie Baucham. His message is clear, concise and convicting. As a matter of fact, the single most convicting message I heard last year came from him. It still convicts me.

I found a similar version of the same sermon by him today and wanted to share if with you. Just a warning though ~ you're not going to like some of the things he says. As a matter of fact, some of you might get down right mad.

And that's okay. As Voddie Baucham says, "if you can't say amen, then you can say ouch".

So, go here. Then scroll down until you see Voddie Baucham - Closing the Generation Gap and click on it.

Listen intently.

Learn something.

Come back and tell me what you think.